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Algorithms for Hyper-Parameter Optimization
James Bergstra · Rémi Bardenet · Yoshua Bengio · Balázs Kégl

Mon Dec 12 10:00 AM -- 02:59 PM (PST) @ None #None

Several recent advances to the state of the art in image classification benchmarks have come from better configurations of existing techniques rather than novel approaches to feature learning. Traditionally, hyper-parameter optimization has been the job of humans because they can be very efficient in regimes where only a few trials are possible. Presently, computer clusters and GPU processors make it possible to run more trials and we show that algorithmic approaches can find better results. We present hyper-parameter optimization results on tasks of training neural networks and deep belief networks (DBNs). We optimize hyper-parameters using random search and two new greedy sequential methods based on the expected improvement criterion. Random search has been shown to be sufficiently efficient for learning neural networks for several datasets, but we show it is unreliable for training DBNs. The sequential algorithms are applied to the most difficult DBN learning problems from [Larochelle et al., 2007] and find significantly better results than the best previously reported. This work contributes novel techniques for making response surface models P (y|x) in which many elements of hyper-parameter assignment (x) are known to be irrelevant given particular values of other elements.

Author Information

James Bergstra (Kindred)
Rémi Bardenet (Univ. Paris-Sud XI)
Yoshua Bengio (University of Montreal)

Yoshua Bengio (PhD'1991 in Computer Science, McGill University). After two post-doctoral years, one at MIT with Michael Jordan and one at AT&T Bell Laboratories with Yann LeCun, he became professor at the department of computer science and operations research at Université de Montréal. Author of two books (a third is in preparation) and more than 200 publications, he is among the most cited Canadian computer scientists and is or has been associate editor of the top journals in machine learning and neural networks. Since '2000 he holds a Canada Research Chair in Statistical Learning Algorithms, since '2006 an NSERC Chair, since '2005 his is a Senior Fellow of the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research and since 2014 he co-directs its program focused on deep learning. He is on the board of the NIPS foundation and has been program chair and general chair for NIPS. He has co-organized the Learning Workshop for 14 years and co-created the International Conference on Learning Representations. His interests are centered around a quest for AI through machine learning, and include fundamental questions on deep learning, representation learning, the geometry of generalization in high-dimensional spaces, manifold learning and biologically inspired learning algorithms.

Balázs Kégl (Université Paris Saclay/CNRS)

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